Passaic County NJ Post-Divorce Modification Lawyers
The provisions of your divorce decree are intended to remain in effect interminably; however, they apply to your and your ex-spouse’s situation at the time of the divorce, and may no longer be applicable as your lives evolve and change over time. We live in an extremely fast-paced world, where jobs, incomes, and personal circumstances change constantly. New Jersey law recognizes this reality and provides a vehicle for individuals to adjust provisions of their original divorce decrees through post-divorce modifications. In other words, although a divorce decree is final, certain modifications can be made if circumstances have significantly changed for either party after divorce. The most common modifications after divorce apply to child support and alimony arrangements. Whether the applicant is requesting an increase in payments due to an increase in cost of living, a payer is requesting modification or termination due to the recipient’s cohabitation with another person, or a modification is necessary for another reason, changing divorce orders can be a cumbersome and confusing process. A knowledgeable New Jersey family lawyer can help you to successfully navigate through the courts and ensure that you are well-positioned to achieve your desired outcome.
At The Montanari Law Group, our skilled New Jersey divorce and family law attorneys assist clients with post-decree modifications of alimony, child support, and parental rights in Wayne, Clifton, Haledon, and throughout Essex and Passaic counties. Our extensive experience and dedication to personalized client service allows us to provide support, guidance, and superior results to our clients. When we become involved with your case, we take the time to listen, to develop a thorough understanding of your needs, to inform you of all of your available options, and to create a strategy that is best aligned with your goals. To discuss your unique situation with one of our attorneys, contact our offices in Passaic County today at 973-233-4396 or toll free at 888-877-7985. We provide cost-free initial consultations.
Post-Divorce Modifications in New Jersey
Changes in Alimony Post-Divorce
In New Jersey, there are a variety of changed circumstances that may provide grounds for a modification of alimony. The primary standard for an initial alimony award is to provide both spouses with a standard of living that is similar to that which they enjoyed during the marriage. As a result, a considerable increase in the cost of living may provide grounds for an increase in alimony payments. In other cases, a substantial and involuntary decrease in the supporting spouse’s income may justify a reduction. For example, if your business is forced to close, you lose your job, change positions or industries, or experience a significant reduction in salary, you may be able to have your alimony payments adjusted.
Other changes may involve an illness, disability, or infirmity that occurs after the final judgement of divorce. In other circumstances, a change in the receiving spouse’s income or personal circumstances may provide grounds for an alimony modification. For instance, if the recipient experiences a substantial increase income, gets married, or cohabitates with another person, this may support a request for a reduction in alimony payments. Regardless of the circumstances of your case, it is highly advisable to consult with an experienced New Jersey family lawyer who can help you to justify your case and vigorously advocate on your behalf.
Child Support Modifications After Divorce
New Jersey law strictly regulates and enforces child support arrangements and as such, it is very difficult to modify a child support order. In order to support such a request, you must demonstrate a “permanent, substantial and unanticipated” change in circumstances. In other words, losing your job does not necessarily justify a child support modification, because the State anticipates that your unemployed status is temporary and that you should be taking reasonable measures to find new employment as soon as possible. Perhaps you experience a reduction in income due to a career change. This is unlikely to provide grounds for a child support modification because the choice to change careers was intended, as opposed to unanticipated.
In a recent New Jersey case, a father applied for a reduction in child support because he chose to enroll in a full-time college program. Although he intended to pursue greater income and employment opportunities after receiving his college degree, the State did not allow for a child support reduction because his circumstances were temporary and voluntary. In order to effectively support a request for a reduction in child support, you must construct a compelling case that supports your argument. An experienced attorney can assist you in gathering all of the necessary information, including pay stubs, tax returns, employment history, etc. to develop and present a compelling case on your behalf.
Contact our Wayne NJ Divorce Order Change Attorneys Today
To speak with one of our seasoned Passaic County NJ post-divorce modification attorneys, contact us today at 973-233-4396 for a free initial consultation. We also offer flexible appointment options at our Little Falls offices and are conveniently located next to major highways with access to public transportation.